ROCHESTER N.Y. — The Rochester Nighthawks announced today that they have signed free agent Wayne Van Every to a one-year deal. The hard-shooting lefty forward is the fourth player signed from the Knighthawks Rookie Camp.
“It feels good,” said Van Every. “It’s a chance to play again.”
The 27-year-old is excited about attending his third National Lacrosse League Training Camp. Back in 2014, he was a camp invitee of the New England Black Wolves, and prior to that he was in the Buffalo Bandits’ camp in 2010. Van Every made the practice squad his rookie season after being selected in the second round (21st overall) by the Bandits in the 2010 NLL Entry Draft.
Going to the Knighthawks Rookie Camp in late October and early November allowed him to showcase his talents for another team. He enjoyed every minute of working out at the Iroquois Lacrosse Arena, which is minutes from his house.
“They put us through the systems they are looking to run and our roles,” he said. “They went over the Xs and Os. They were high-tempo practices.”
Signing with the Knighthawks holds special significance for Van Every, who grew up playing lacrosse on the reservation in southern Ontario. Since June of 2008, the Knighthawks have been owned by Six Nations’ Curt Styres, who also serves as the team’s general manager. Van Every is proud to join fellow Six Nations stars Cody Jamieson, Sid Smith, Quinn Powless, Joe “Haodais” Maracle, Wenster Green and Greg Longboat on the Knighthawks roster.
“Getting signed to a team with ties to the community is a bonus,” said Van Every. “You always want to play for your hometown and this team has that hometown feel with several guys from ‘Six’ on the team. I can’t wait to get training camp going.”
Van Every played his junior ball with the Junior “B” Six Nations Rebels the Junior “A” Six Nations Arrows. In 2007, he won the Founders Cup with the Rebels and three seasons later he was the top scorer in Junior “B” lacrosse. During the 2009 to 2010 seasons, Van Every appeared in 30 games with the Arrows and notched 30 goals and 24 assists.
Since graduating from the Junior “A” ranks, he has played for a variety of teams in his hometown. Six times he finished in the top 10 in scoring, which last included the 2015 season with the Six Nations Rivermen. That year, he posted 47 points in 11 games to finish third in the Senior “B” loop. He went on to lead the President’s Cup tournament in scoring as the Rivermen captured the prestigious trophy.
Van Every will now bring his talents to Rochester as the Knighthawks open training camp this weekend at Total Sports Experience in East Rochester. Over the next five days, he plans on doing everything he can to stay sharp before hitting the turf with the Knighthawks.
“On Tuesday nights, the boys get together and shoot around at the ILA,” he said. “I am going to keep my stick in my hands and (this weekend) I am going to battle for a spot on the left side.”